Hypertension Campaign Saves Lives

Source: United Methodist News

Responding to growing rates of high blood pressure in sub-Saharan Africa, United Methodist Church missionaries have partnered with clinics throughout the Democratic Republic of Congo to help combat hypertension.

Using an educational mission’s model, the idea to support life-saving interventions developed in early 2021, when Harper Hill Global, a Nashville, Tennessee, faith-based organization, merged with the World Hypertension Action Group, Colleagues in Care and the North Katanga United Methodist Church to provide education services to high risk pregnancy women grappling with high blood pressure.

Through the work of individuals like Rev. Betty Kazadi Musau, health board chair and Director of Communications for the church’s North Katanga Episcopal Area, the church works with pregnant and expectant mothers to develop strategies that reduce risk of miscarriage and other associated complications.

“The Bible says individuals perish because they lack having knowledge. When education is introduced to the understanding of hypertension, the information eliminates myths by unveiling ignorance,” said Musau.

One of the major cultural components, health officials work to combat is the belief in many parts of rural Africa that if a woman dies during childbirth, it is due to the black magic of witchcraft.

Rev. Neelley Hicks, founder of Harper Hill Global said, by educating women about hypertension it is not only creating better health outcomes but also transforming communal understandings of religion opening people’s hearts to receiving the gospel.

“It is about being the hands and feet of Christ in the world,” Hicks said. “We only serve as a bridge to the cause.”

A speech Hicks made at the United Nations five years ago made a tremendous impression on Robert St. Thomas. Through a partnership with the World Hypertension Action Group and Colleagues in Care, Hicks works to provide access to quality medical care at an early stage in pregnancy which increases healthy outcomes.

To learn more about the United Methodist Shungu Clinic through Global Ministries please visit Advance #3020662.

Source: United Methodist News